With a unanimous vote, the city council approved the City of Tulsa fiscal year 2016-2017 budget Thursday night. There were, however, “substantial modifications.”
The council said it modified the Mayor’s proposed budget to avoid cutting 14 911 call-taker positions. Councilors said it is important to fulfill commitments made during the Vision Tulsa campaign to add to the 911 operations.
“I am so excited that the councilors and the mayor were able to work together to make this budget process successful,” Councilor Jeannie Cue said. "With concerns to cutbacks, we were able to restore critical 911 operators while supporting economic development activity for our city.”
The council also said it added funding to the mayor’s proposed budget to restore staff to process building permits and licensing. The councilors said that effectively helps keep economic activity in the community.
Modifications were also made to the legal department and they restored funding for a police advisor for training, advice and support.
Funding was also restored to the City’s Main Street programs in Kendall-Whittier and Route 66 Redford, along with two staff positions at the Chamberlain Park Recreation Center.
The council said it also held more than $3 million in reserve for potential revenue declines.
They said, if revenues perform well, the council has identified top priorities for review including restoring code enforcement capacity, acquiring infrared devices for firefighters and others.